Essential oils are becoming increasingly popular as a technique to treat everything from anxiety to specific health concerns. These strong oils, traditionally used in aromatherapy, are sometimes regarded as natural, alternative solutions to traditional medicine and people are increasingly employing them in their homes for a number of purposes but is it safe to expose your pet dog to these oils?
The quick answer is no, but it depends on the oils you use, how you use them, and, most importantly, what your veterinarian says.
Danger of Essential Oils for Dog
Some essential oils can be harmful to dogs, whether they are consumed or come into touch with their skin. Melaleuca (tea tree), wintergreen, sweet birch, pine, pennyroyal, cinnamon, and some citrus oils are among the more hazardous oils.
- Cinnamon Oil
- Citrus Oil
- Clove Oil
- Eucalyptus Oil
- Lemon Oil
- Pennyroyal Oil
- Peppermint Oil
- Pine Oil
- Sweet Birch Oil
- Tea Tree Oil
- Wintergreen Oil
- Ylang ylang Oil
You should avoid used the above essential oils for aromatherapy if you diffuse oils in your home. Although the diffusion is not always detrimental to dogs, having these pollutants in your home is a concern.
Another issue for dogs is the inhalation of essential oils. In general, breathing in the aroma of diffusers is not an issue. However, if a pet sniffs the diffuser and gets oil in his or her airway, it might be dangerous.
Safe Way to Use
If you want to use essential oils on your dog, you should only do so under the direct supervision of a veterinarian who is trained in their application. Applying essential oils to a dog’s skin or coat can be extremely dangerous.
The oil may come into contact with sensitive areas such as their eyes or mucous membranes by accident. Oils applied straight to their skin might also be irritating in rare situations, particularly for pups who already suffer from sensitive skin or other dermatological issues.
Most dogs, most of the time, will want to lick off anything you put on their skin or coat. Essential oils can be exceedingly harmful if ingested. Never allow your dog to lick or swallow essential oils.
Keep diffusers and essential oils out of your dog’s reach at all times. To avoid accidental consumption, properly clean spills. Avoid dispersing oils near a dog’s nose. Keep the scent to a minimum as well. Even if they are non-toxic, essential oils can be overpowering and create stress in dogs. Keep in mind that your dog’s sense of smell is 10,000 times stronger than yours. This means that if you can barely smell something, your dog might be having sensory overload.
Lavender essential oil is excellent for aromatherapy. It is supposed to have a calming effect on both humans and animals. Lavender oil is known to be relaxing to the central nervous system and calming when inhaled, and a 2006 study published in the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association found that using diffused lavender oil as aromatherapy reduced dogs’ activity and vocalization during treatment. Again, use it sparingly as to not overwhelm your dog.
Many pet owners are probably aware of the idea of use essential oils instead of other commercial flea and tick preventives. However, while some essential oils may repel fleas and other insects, they are not strong enough to kill them. Unfortunately, no natural ways of controlling fleas and other parasites have been established.
Keep all essential oils, even those deemed safe, out of the reach of pets at all times. If your four-legged pal unintentionally consumes these toxic oils, contact your veterinarian as well as poison control right away.
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